ISLAMABAD: Foreign Minister Makhdoom Shah Mahmood Qureshi on Friday urged the Afghan leaders to expedite progress in Intra-Afghan Negotiations for lasting peace in Afghanistan. He talked to Chairman Afghan High Council for National Reconciliation (HCNR) Abdullah Abdullah during a meeting held on the sidelines of the Antalya Diplomacy Forum (ADF) in Turkey. Recalling the successful visit of Abdullah Abdullah in September 2020, the Foreign Minister reaffirmed Pakistan’s policy of maintaining the broad engagement with Afghan political leadership to forge a deeper mutual understanding of the bilateral relations and the Afghan peace process. He highlighted Pakistan’s meaningful contribution to facilitating the direct talks between the U.S. and the Taliban, and the Afghan parties. The foreign minister reiterated that it was now up to the Afghan leaders to seize the historic opportunity afforded by the Intra-Afghan Negotiations for an inclusive, broad-based, and comprehensive settlement. He added that the progress in the Afghan peace process was critical to reduce space for spoilers who did not wish to see the return of peace in the region. The foreign minister underscored that negative statements and blame games only served to vitiate the environment and strengthen the hand of spoilers who wished to derail the peace process.